Until recently, it was not possible to run LEAP directly on Apple Mac computers. The workaround was to install complete copies of Windows on your Mac and to use these either in a separate boot partition or to run them within a Virtual machine using separate software such as Parallels or VMWare Fusion. However, these approaches are complex to administer and require you to purchase separate licenses both for Windows and for VMWare or Parallels.
An alternative approach is now available that let's you run LEAP directly on a Mac using the WINE operating environment. This approach has two key advantages. Firstly, it does not require you to purchase, install and then maintain Windows or any virtualization software, so it saves time, money and disk space. Secondly it is free of cost. It only requires that you download a small free utility called "Winebottler". Below are instructions for getting WineBottler and for using it to install and run LEAP directly on a Mac. WINE could also be used to allow LEAP to work on Linux-based computers (e.g. those running Ubuntu).
Please note that these instructions are very much experimental! We have not yet fully tested LEAP under WINE but will be doing so in the coming weeks to make sure the major features at least of LEAP work well. We will continue to update this page as and when we have additional tips and information.
- Get Wine and WineBottler
here. They are available in a single 73MB downloadable installation. Both are free, but you may want to make a donation to support the developer of WineBottler.
- Download the LEAP installation program (setup.exe) to your Mac's desktop. You can get LEAP here.
- Install Winebottler: Run the downloaded WineBottler combo package (a .dmg file) and then drag and drop Wine and WineBottler to Your Applications Folder as shown here:
- Open your Mac's Applications folder and run Wine. It will appear as a small Wine glass icon in the menu bar at the top of your screen
(). You don’t need to do anything with it.
- Run Wine Bottler (from the Applications folder) and select "Create Custom Prefixes". On this screen, shown below, you need to select the LEAP installation program (setup.exe, downloaded in step 2 above to your Mac's desktop). All other options can be left at their default values.
- Click the install button and Save as an app named "LEAP" in your Applications folder (as shown below).
- This will start the installation process for LEAP (and will run the LEAP installer program). Follow the on-screen instructions for this including accepting the LEAP license agreement, and installing LEAP in its default folder, but at the end I suggest you do NOT choose to Launch LEAP immediately. Once the installation is complete the Mac will ask you to confirm which (Windows) file should be run when you click the LEAP app on your Mac. You can simply accept the default suggestion (Program Files/LEAP2012/leap.exe) as shown below.
- If all goes well the Mac will show a dialog saying "Prefix created successfully".
- You can now completely close the Wine Bottler application. You won't need it again for running LEAP.
- To run LEAP, select it from your Mac's Applications folder. If you want to keep LEAP easily available you can right-click its icon in the Mac Dock and select Options: Keep in Dock.
- As far as I can tell (with only simple testing so far) most of the functionality of LEAP works just fine including the ability to show help pages and to download data sets from the Internet. One known limitation is that LEAP will not automatically connect to MS Office applications (Word, Excel and PowerPoint).
LEAP's API is also unlikely to be functional. To prove I'm not making this up(!) here is a a screen shot of LEAP running under Wine on a Mac (OSX Lion). NB: I still need to do more testing of this and I would welcome any feedback on aspects of LEAP that are not working properly or
suggestions for making this work better. One know limitation so far: If you close LEAP it does not seem to properly close the window in the Mac.I'm
working on this.
Credits: thanks to Jenny Mager of the Chilean Climate Change Office for discovering how WineBottler can be used for running LEAP on a Mac.